What is a Cataract?
A cataract happens when the lens within your eye becomes cloudy. Cataracts are more common in people over 65 but can occur at any age. Cataracts can appear in one or both eyes.
If you are starting with cataracts you may notice your vision becoming misty and less clear. You may also notice that you’re more easily dazzled by vehicle headlights, or that objects appear less colourful. You may have more difficulty seeing in poor light. You may need to change the prescription of your glasses more regularly than usual.
At first your optometrist may be able to prescribe new glasses that will help with changes to your vision caused by the cataract or you may be advised to read in brighter light. When this no longer helps you to see well enough, the only effective treatment is surgery. Surgery is usually only recommended once the cataract is causing problems with everyday activities, such as driving, watching television and reading.
Should you require cataract surgery this is done by an Ophthalmologist in a hospital, often using a local anaesthetic. The operation itself usually takes around 30 minutes to complete. You do not normally need stitches and are usually free to go home the same day. You are usually advised to wear an eye patch for sleeping after the surgery and will be required to put in eye drops 4 times daily for 3-4 weeks.
Following surgery, the prescription of your glasses will change and you are usually advised by the Ophthalmologist to have your vision checked 3-4 weeks following the surgery.